Ananda Yoga – This yoga practice centers on use of asana, pranayama, yogic meditation, and applied yoga philosophy with the aim of expanding consciousness and balancing the triune of mind, body, and spirit. Developed by Swami Kriyananda, whose guru was Paramhansa Yogananda, the style includes Energization Exercises and affirmations with each posture.
“Flowing with grace” is the primary meaning behind the word anusara. Anusara yoga was developed in 1997 by John Friend, who was immersed in both Hatha and Iyengar yoga in his early career. Anusara yoga, like Iyengar, focuses on proper alignment and incorporates the concept of the inherent goodness of the individual, as per Tantric philosophy. Read moreFounded by Gurudev Yogi Amrit Desai, Amrit yoga has close ties with Kripalu, as Gurudev’s guru was Swami Shri Kripalvanandji (Kripalu). Known as the “Posture of Consciousness,” part of the central teachings of Amrit yoga involve how to see opportunities to change perspective and evolve our consciousness when we are confronted with life’s challenges.
Source: amrityoga.org Sri K. Pattabhi Jois was instrumental in popularizing this form of yoga. Translated, this method means “eight-limbed yoga,” named so after the eight spiritual practices outlined in the Yoga Sutras. The style emphasizes proper use of vinyasa (breathing and movement) in conjunction with tristhana (posture, breathing, and visual attention). Read more
Source: ashtanga.com Also known as “power” yoga, Baron Baptiste developed this practice in the early 90s. With a no-frills, strength-focused approach, Baptiste has also generated interest in his form of yoga within the National Football League, having served as part of the coaching staff for the Philadelphia Eagles in the mid-90s.
Source: baronbaptiste.com With 26 Hatha postures, Bikram yoga is a heated-room practice, founded by Bikram Choudhury. The 90-minute practice takes place within relatively high humidity (40-60%) in a room heated between 104-106 degrees. The entire sequence is capped by two breathing exercises. The heat is said to assist the body’s flexibility and enhance the detoxification process. Read more Also known as “forceful” yoga, Hatha yoga is a powerful practice and is one of the four main types of yoga in the Tantric tradition. Taken from the words for “sun” and “moon,” the word “hatha” combines opposites, as the practice itself emulates. While all yoga merges breath with postures, Hatha aims to awaken the “nadis,” or subtle channels within. Read more
Source: sanatansociety.org Founded in 1966 by Sri Swami Satchidananda, this style of yoga incorporates Raja, Japa, Karma, Hatha, Bhakti and Jnana yoga. The central goal of the practice is to give one an “easeful body, a peaceful mind, and a useful life.” Read more
Source: iyiny.org Offering training courses for yoga professionals, the IYT provides therapeutic yoga instruction that is rooted in the “koshas,” the five dimensions of being. Ranging from 200-800-hour certification programs, IYT also offers home study courses and a week intensive program designed to help professional yoga teachers broaden their practices.
Source: iytyogatherapy.com Developed by Alan Finger and his father, Mani, in the 1960s, this practice takes its name, ISHTA, from the meaning of “that which resonates with the individual spirit,” and is an acronym for the Integrated Science of Hatha, Tantra and Ayurveda. Mani was originally trained by Paramhansa Yogananda.
Source: ishtayoga.com B.K.S. Iyengar founded this style of yoga in the 1970s. With emphasis on “precision and alignment” in the postures, as well as following the proper sequencing, Iyengar yoga aims to help the individual with health, balanced emotions, and “intellectual clarity.” As the official Iyengar Website notes, violinist Lord Yehudi Menuhin acknowledged Iyengar as his greatest violin teacher. Read more
Source: bksiyengar.com This yoga centers on having compassion for all beings and developing positive relationships that are rooted in joyfulness. Jivamukti also incorporates five major tenets as part of its composite makeup, ahisma (non-violence), bhakti (Divine-centered practice), dhyana (meditation), shastra (study of yogic traditions) and nada (enhanced listening). Read more
Source: jivamuktiyoga.com Kali Ray, also known as Yogini Kaliji, developed the TriYoga practice, which incorporates the aspects of Hatha yoga and focuses on the “union of posture, breath and focus.” Also, “relaxation in action” and “wavelike movements” are key components of the practice.
Source: triyoga.com Swami Kripulvananda (Kripalu) is the man behind this practice that came to the West in the 1960s through Kripalu’s follower, Amrit Desai. Unlike other types of yoga, the posture sequences and instructions aren’t controlled, leaving plenty of room for flexibility and creativity within a class. It’s generally suitable for all levels of practitioners. Read more
Source: kripalu.org A Raj yoga practice, Kundalini yoga incorporates the eight limbs of yoga. The practice arrived in the United States in the 1960s with its founder, Yogi Bhajan. Known as the “Yoga of Awareness,” its aim is to bring each individual to maximum awareness of the “unlimited Self.” Read more
Source: kundaliniresearchinstitute.org While debate exists over who originated the concept of power yoga, the practice itself has clearly defined roots in the Ashtanga yoga practice. Its two principle “founders” were both Ashtanga trained, Beryl Bender Birch (East coast) and Bryan Kest (West coast). However, power yoga is still more of an all-encompassing term to describe yoga that generally aims to build strength while making you sweat. Read more As the name suggests, this yoga is specifically designed for the expecting moms-to-be. Traditional yoga postures are modified to accommodate the pregnant practitioner as her body develops through the trimesters. Emphasis on postures that prepare the body for labor, along with calming breathing techniques and visualizations may be included. Read more Both a practice and a teacher training style, Phoenix Rising Yoga Therapy is two-fold. For teachers, Phoenix Rising offers classes on how to guide clients through specialized, assisted yoga therapy sessions to help enhance the clients’ lives. For individuals, Phoenix Rising is a one-on-one session that is “like having yoga class done to your body.”
Source: pryt.com Known as the “royal path of meditation,” Raja yoga, or mental yoga, is entirely focused on the awareness of one’s state of mind for the purposes of self-understanding and higher consciousness. Raja yoga incorporates the Eight-Fold Path, including yamas, niyamas, asana, pranayama, pratyahara, dharana, dhyana and samadhi.
Source: rajayogis.net This branch of yoga has its roots with the practice of B.K.S. Iyengar, with Judith Hanson Lasater, an Iyengar teacher, credited as popularizing it. Focus of the practice is on rejuvenation, relaxation, and rest. Use of props is encouraged to make the postures more suitable for any practitioner. Read more Named after Swami Sivananda and founded by his student, Swami Vishnudevananda, this yoga practice centers around five main points, including proper exercise, proper breathing, proper diet, positive thinking, and meditation. It also incorporates the Four Paths of Yoga (Raja, Bhakti, Karma, and Jnana). Read more Svaroopa®, “the Bliss of your own Being,” is the name of this practice that is focused on a Grace-filled experience that uses “precise angles, alignments and propping” to enhance the practice of Svaroopa® yoga. Founded by Swami Nirmalananda inspired by her guru, Swami Muktananda, the goal is to experience your own Divine Essence.
Source: svaroopayoga.org With respect to each yoga practitioner’s individuality, Viniyoga “implies differentiation, adaptation, and appropriate application.” Since no two people are alike, the practice, while steeped in the traditional yogic principles of breathing, meditation, spiritual study, sound, and personal introspection, is individually based, with adaptations made to accommodate each practitioner to best facilitate his or her personal journey with yoga.
Source: viniyoga.com Vinyasa yoga is almost always known as Ashtanga Vinyasa yoga, or Ashtanga yoga. While some may refer to it as “flow” yoga, the central concepts of the Vinyasa yoga practice are those of Ashtanga yoga, with emphasis on breath in concert with deliberately sequenced movements. Read more With postures that may be held from one to 20 minutes, Yin yoga is a specialized practice that moves its practitioners in ways other types of yoga will not. The practice seeks to balance the yang energy in the body and its movements target the connective tissues, especially those in the low back, pelvis and hips. Read more